I don't know about the rest of the country, but here in Illinois today, the weather is positively spring-like. Currently, it's about 45 degrees, the birds are singing, the snow is melting, the mud is forming and the cattlemen are praying their calves don't get sick. Because, as Illinois weather dictates, our high last Thursday was somewhere south of 7 degrees.
And it's Valentine's Day! Just in case you hadn't noticed. This is strictly my opinion, but I feel Valentine's Day is going the way of Mother's Day. Seriously, crazily over-merchandised and over-marketed. I think Valentine's is great fun for the kids, and it's a good day to take stock of our marriage and say, "hey, I'm glad we got together. You're cute."
But Zales diamonds? Expensive roses? Lovely though they may be (and what a wonderful surprise, if you're a male who's gone this route!), we just don't usually do that. In fact, John just came in from chores to bring me a bag of Ghirardelli strawberry and vanilla chocolates (we had one together; they are divine) and we'll have a another tonight, after the kids' school parties are over, tumbling is done, supper is eaten, kids are in bed and I'm back from my Bible study. Assuming there aren't any calving problems to take care of at that point.
That said, the taking stock of marriage thing is important. A week ago, John and Kendra Smiley came to our church to lead a day-long marriage conference. It was fun, it was enlightening, and it reminded us of some good basic stuff that we tend to forget in the throes of daily life with three small kids and a bunch of cows. Stuff like taking the time to speak each other's love language. Sappy though it may seem, it totally works.
So today, I'm wishing you the time to slow down, throw a steak on the grill, and tell your farmer or farmwife you love them. And maybe have a little chocolate.